Is Riot’s decision to record voice chat going to create meaningful change?

Riot Games created a lot of noise online last week when they updated their privacy policy so that they could record in-game voice chat to help with their efforts to curb toxicity in Valorant.

This, of course, opened up a can of worms, with both advocates and detractors making their voices heard.

It’s a tough topic, because even though I don’t play a lot of Valorant, I am well-acquainted with the toxic culture that has developed in almost all multiplayer games.

Personally, I think that trash talking has its place in multiplayer games. Where I draw the line is when players start to feel comfortable with throwing racist or sexist insults out to people just because they can.

I am torn about allowing voice chat to be recorded because it certainly feels like an infringement on privacy. There is also the potential for abuse, depending on who will be in charge of enforcing policies.

That saddest thing is that the state of online gaming has led us to this point. Here are links to a couple of examples of bad behaviour (warning: language in videos is offensive).

Having no consequences for this kind of toxicity is something that definitely needs to change. I’m not sure if recording voice chat is going to be the best way about it, but I’m curious to see the results.

It’s unfortunately reached a point where I don’t believe that positivity from the community is what can stop toxicity. Hard bans and strict enforcement are the more effective deterrent.

Not everyone is convinced that there will be a lasting effect.

“I don’t know how much it will accomplish,” shares Victoria Cheng, our Top Nerd, “I commend their efforts, but even when I report someone using text-based offensive or hate language, I don’t know if anything even happens. I don’t have an issue from a privacy angle because I can have private conversations on discord or other platforms. I try to be reasonable to trolls and other people online, and sometimes it works, but it’s draining to put in the effort to constantly talk people into behaving better.”

One thing’s for sure, though. Something is better than nothing. If voice chat-based bans are effective in Valorant then maybe it can carry over to other games and genres.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button